Being handy isn't required

Published 4:07 am Wednesday, February 13, 2008

By Staff
The Beans are not handy people, not by a long shot. Our back porch lightbulb has been out for about two weeks, and we've not made it around to fixing it yet.
But one of the most rewarding - and tiring - afternoons my husband and I spent in the past year was helping out at the last Brewton Habitat for Humanity project.
For several hours, Josh and I laid sod, along with many other volunteers. We didn't feel quite as useful as the folks who were hammering nails or installing shingles, but we did feel we could contribute something to the massive community effort that was building two houses for two Brewton families.
Besides, it is not hard to remember the most important rule of laying sod - green side up.
We all have an opportunity to contribute to a Habitat project in the coming weeks. From March 1-8, Habitat for Humanity will build one house for one family - from start to finish. The keys to the house will be turned over to the Woods family on Saturday, March 8, so they can begin life in their new home.
Habitat has issued a special challenge this year. Because so much of the work will be done during the day, local businesses have been asked to “donate” their employees who are willing to help out for a few hours or even a few days of work.
The Brewton Standard has a couple of staff members planning to step up during that week. News Editor Lisa Tindell assures me her hours logged watching the “DIY” network will help out immensely at the site. I encourage other businesses to offer that opportunity to their employees, as well.
But even if you don't have any building experience, Habitat can still use your help. Building coordinators Terrence Breckenridge and Rusty Miller have a big network of experienced volunteers who can show newbies the ropes, and you'll also find lots of tasks - like laying sod - that don't require too much skill.
If you can't volunteer during the daytime hours, Habitat will have some evening times scheduled for building, and the entire project begins on the weekend, so there are plenty of opportunities to help out.
And if you aren't physically able to pitch in that week - if, say, you're going to be eight months pregnant like I will be by then - you can still volunteer to help with meals or snacks.
With each project, enthusiasm for Habitat seems to grow and grow. I expect this one will be no different. I think the house in a week will be the house that Brewton built, not just the house that Habitat built.
Kerry Whipple Bean is publisher of The Brewton Standard. She can be reached at 867-4876.

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